Saturday, January 28, 2017

power outfit, round 2

Belle + Sky scuba skater dress and fleece-lined tights, JcPenney
Born boots, Macy's
White House Black Market blazer, thrifted
cardigan, Banana Republic

     I wore this recently for the second round of parent-teacher conferences this school year, and it seems black + boots is what makes me feel confident. It was a bit chilly to wear tights, but I couldn't pass up the chance of wearing a dress with boots.

Sunday, January 22, 2017

guiding words

Tahari shell, Alfani pants and Born boots, Macy's
cardigan, Gap Outlet

    First post of 2017! (About time ....) 
   It seems that January started so slowly, with the inevitable readjustment to early wake-up calls and busy days after the languor of winter break. I'm still a bit in disbelief that January is just about gone! I usually give myself a month to figure out my goals for the year, and my deadline is fast approaching. I did work partway through Susannah Conway's Find Your Word  series, but the words I'm trying to live by came to me before I started reflecting:
   Intentional: I want to be more intentional - with my time, money, resources, etc. For the first time ever, I started planning out what's for dinner. It gives me satisfaction to know what goes into my food, save money, and eat a home-cooked meal. It's also been a fun way to try out new recipes. I'm also striving to be more intentional with my time by putting my phone away and reading, instead. I've gotten through three books this month and have several more that are in progress. 
   Flow: While I often enjoy training in a new style of aikido, it can be very challenging at times. I'm working in my discomfort zone most of the time! Physically, I'm trying things that scare me a little, such as learning to break fall or how to load someone - or be loaded - for a hip throw. Mentally, I have to deal with the frustrations that come with learning a new style of weapons. The word "flow" reminds me to be pliable in all ways, to readjust, and that sometimes I need to take a step back before moving forward.      
    Whew, so that's my plan for 2017 in a nutshell ... now let's talk clothes! My sister and I went outlet shopping when we were in Hawaii over winter break, and I was excited to find a red cardigan. I had one before that was very versatile, but the fit was a bit off, so I donated it. It was a bit too cold to wear this sleeveless shell with a cardigan (even with a tank underneath and my smaller black cardigan hiding out underneath this red one), but it was a nice change of pace - I get tired of my uniform of long-sleeve shirt + sweater + vest.

Friday, December 16, 2016

mixing it up

Hourglass Lilly tunic and White House Black Market blazer, thrifted
leggings, Walmart
gray cardigan, Old Navy
D&Y scarf, Ross
Born boots, Macy's

      A little pattern-mixing today ... really more out of necessity than style - it was cold! However, I did get a compliment from a co-worker who thought this was chic. Wearing these boots for the third time and they're breaking in well, although they're still rubbing my ankle bones a bit.

Tuesday, November 29, 2016

shades of green

sweater, Tommy Hilfiger outlet
Black Rivet leather jacket, Wilsons
scarf, Zulily
Jolt pants, Macy's

      I'm so glad that I settled on getting this sweater in green instead of a neutral - it's nice to have a little color on a cold day. 
     Had a great Thanksgiving weekend - drove down to Los Angeles for Thanksgiving, and came back in time to bake a pan of oatmeal, accomplish the usual chores, start reading M.T. Anderson's "Feed," and enjoy two hours of aikido practice.
     It was a little rough waking on Monday, but it helped that my students had double specials - an extra hour to run copies and putter around the classroom helped me to ease back into the grind.
    Now that Thanksgiving has passed, it's time to think about Christmas decorations. I'd like to get a small artificial Christmas tree ... one of my favorite things about December is eating breakfast by the light of a Christmas tree! It makes those workday mornings a little more fun.
Hsi Lai temple, Los Angeles

Monday, November 21, 2016

fighting the cold

Banana Republic merino wool sweater, thrifted 
vest, Old Navy
Jolt pants, Macy's
J. Crew necklace, eBay

       Well, this is a first on this blog - an attempt at cold-weather dressing. My first time wearing wool - while I think this is the softest wool ever gets, I still found it a bit scratchy, particularly around the neck.  I do like this sweater, though; I found it in the men's section, and the fit is surprisingly nice. It's a decent length in the torso, the V neck is not inappropriate (hard to find when you're petite!) and the longer ribbed cuffs are cozy. I'm going to have start combing through the men's sweater section at the thrift store on a regular basis.  
      I'm still learning how to style these vests - I feel like from the waist up, this might read as more elegant than from the waist down (I wore sneakers, and the pants have cargo details). So not an overall successful outfit, but it was fun to put together.

Tuesday, November 15, 2016

secret weapon

top, cardigan, pants, and socks -  Old Navy
necklace, eBay
Born "Arletta" oxfords, Nordstrom Rack

      My secret weapon to beat the Monday-after-a-long-weekend blues?  Quirkily patterned socks. The ones I'm wearing are maroon with hedgehogs. I know that you can't see the pattern, but I kind of like that - it's enough for me to know that they're there.
      It was a great long weekend - I lounged about the house on Friday, then did 2 hours of aikido on Saturday. Practice was followed up by lunch at a new ramen spot; I've never had Brussels sprouts in ramen, but it was surprisingly tasty. I walked off lunch at Target, then went for green tea Kit Kat gelato at a place that's been on my must-try list for a while. On Saturday evening I cooked a chicken tortilla soup that got rave reviews from my husband. I got some grading done, cleaned out my burgeoning work bags, tackled the usual weekend chores, and started reading John Green's "An Abundance of Katherines" and continued with Cheryl Strayed's "Tiny Beautiful Things."
     I firmly believe in refraining from Christmas decor and apparel until post-Thanksgiving, but that didn't stop me from buying a pair of reindeer-print socks and a mini string of snowman holiday lights from the Target Dollar Spot. I'm considering whether I should put the lights up at home or string them along the front of my desk at work.

Monday, November 14, 2016

power outfit

Alfani tunic and Born "Michel" boots, Macy's
White House Black Market blazer, thrifted
leggings, Walmart

        What I wore for Day 2 of conferences: A lot of my colleagues went traditional, with nice dresses and heels. I went for a little more edgy - my idea of a "power outfit."
     Wearing my new boots! The first time I wore them, they rubbed raw spots on both ankle bones, but today was better, perhaps because I wasn't on my feet as much.